Friday, 2 January 2009

Just how many Black American Transwomen ARE there?

About half what there should be. They get murdered in hate crimes too often.
In their report, the Task Force had pronounced the prevalence of GID to be 1:11,900 (MtF) and 1:30,400 (FtM), using numbers that were based on counts of sex reassignments at a Dutch gender clinic during the 1980's

That's the official view of the American Psychological Association in its Report of the Task Force on Gender Identity and Gender Variance. We'll call it 1 in 10,000 though to make sure we over- rather than under-estimate.

So how many Blacks are there in America?
40.2 million
As of July 1, 2006, the estimated population of black residents in the United States, including those of more than one race. They made up 13.4% of the total U.S. population. This figure represents an increase of half a million residents from one year earlier.
That's from the last US Census. About half would be born looking male - call it 20 million. So one could reasonably expect the number of Black American TS women to be about 2,000. Roughly. Maybe a little less. Assuming the usual US birth rate of 10%, that means 200 are born every year. About. Probably a few more. (Births - deaths) is about 500,000 a year for the US Black population at large, so you'd expect an increase of about 50 a year. Roughly. About.

Black Transwomen are being killed in hate crimes at a rate of 30 a year. They comprise the majority of murders of Transpeople. Deaths from all other causes, assuming the normal life expectancy of about 75, would be 1/75 of 2,000 - call it just under 30. Roughly. It's not that simple, you have to look at how many were born when, but it would be less rather than more, so I'll go with that figure.

Something is terribly, terribly wrong here. The rate of lynching of Black American Transwomen is at least comparable to, and probably exceeds, the expected death rate from all other causes put together. Even if my figures are out by a factor of 3, it's still the leading single cause of death for them.

I'd appreciate it if my rough figures could be checked and shown to be wildly wrong. Because they suggest that Black Transwomen in the USA have a greater than 1 in 7 chance of being killed in a hatecrime. And the numbers, instead of increasing by 50 a year, are only increasing by 20 because so very many are killed for being who they are.

Now I agree with Prof Lynn Conway that the APA's figures are distinctly dodgy, and an under-estimate. So I don't think things are quite that bad in reality. Yet that's what the official figures show. So why is not something being done about it?


Nica said...

Well, one obvious comment would be, let's hope that the new administration will examine this situation and do something about it. Do I think that will happen? Mmmmmmm, maybe not.

Now if some famous and well known white sisters mounted a very public campaign, then, maybe, chances might improve. *wink*

On a personal note, I share the elevators and parts of the building with my black sisters of all ages when I visit my therapist in Center City once a week.

I can feel them looking at me. I often wonder how they are feeling and what they must be thinking when they look at me. I am not sure what I should do or say, or if I should do or say anything at all.

My report from the front lines.

Hazumu Osaragi said...

Undercount will be a serious impediment to the trans community for years. Prof. Conway has done wonderful work with her supported estimates of TG/TS prevalence. But...

The 2010 United States Census is coming up. There is a fight over whether or not to put a question about homosexuality in it (the social fundamentalists are against it -- they cherish their 'less than 2%' meme, and would hate to have it shattered by a more accurate estimate.)

Like it as not, TG/TS would get lumped in to that category.

What if there were a question about TG/TS? How would an adherent to Harry Benjamin Syndrome (HBS) respond? What would be the response of a minister who won't transition because the need to transition does not yet outweigh what would be almost certainly be lost in their present life?

There would be massive undercount in any such direct counting.

We are stuck with indirect counts such as Prof. Conways. And we are stuck with a scientific community that has no reason to correct the huge errors and misinformation in their conclusions...

We're right--

We lose--

Anonymous said...

Now compare them to the average sex worker. Then again to the Thai TS population. Or how about to children with just one parent or low income. Before you just campare race you also need to take into account other factors.

Anonymous said...

Despite these increases, however, black children are still almost twice as likely as white children to die before reaching age 20.

Average life of black males in the U.S. is 64.7 years.